World Monetary Policy: ECB Council member Rehn warns against price fluctuations by German Energy Policy

01:55  24 january  2022
01:55  24 january  2022 Source:   handelsblatt.com

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The German nuclear phase-out could contribute to uncertainty in inflation according to the Finnish central bank boss. Another council colleague fears that inflation will remain high even longer.

EZB-Gebäude in Frankfurt. © dpa ECB building in Frankfurt.

The Finnish central bank chef Olli Rehn warns that German atomic phase-out increases the dependence on Russia and destabilizes the energy market. "The decisions on energy policy in Germany affect price fluctuations and thus on uncertainty about the inflation ," said the ECB Council member in the interview with the Handelsblatt. "The change from coal on natural gas is not a green for me, and this transitional phase will take a long time in Germany."

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inflation in the euro area has risen to a record high above all due to expensive energy. In December, energy prices increased by 26 percent compared to the same period of the previous year. services and goods cost 5.0 percent more than a year earlier.

Rehn expects "that the drivers of inflation are leased in the course of the year" and the inflation rate in the euro area will be at about two percent over the next two years. The further pace in the normalization of monetary policy in the euro area depends on the data.

"I personally assume that the economic data will remain relatively good despite the influence by the omikron variant." For this reason, he holds interest rate increases in 2023 for "logical", at least, "if there are no new economic disorders ".

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in the debate about the EU fiscal rules pleads the Finnish central bank chief for adjustments. The rules would be consistent, realistic and flexible at the same time. "A debt limit of around 60 percent of gross domestic product, as it prescribes the previous regulation is clearly unrealistic." He pointed out that Italy's debt ratio is expected to be about 160 percent after the pandemic. "If targets are unreachable, they will not do anything."

Holzmann: "assume that inflation will go back"

also the Austrian central bank boss Robert Holzmann considers the further inflation development in the euro area for very uncertain. "We all assume that inflation will go back," he said to the newspaper "The Press" in an interview published on Sunday. "The question is only in which time period?" Holzmann belongs to the


Council, which meets the monetary policy decisions in the euro area. The original assumption was that it comes to a reassurance in early 2022 and there is a strong decline in the fourth quarter. "It's not yet excluded that it comes so." However, you did not know, "whether inflation does not remain at a high level."

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Decisive from the point of view of Holzmann so-called two-round effects - that is, about wage increases. Some experts fear that workers may demand significantly higher wages due to purchasing power losses and that could start a wage-price spiral in which both factors increase each other. However, Holzmann sees "no corresponding signs yet".


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